8 (generous) portions.
Skill level: Easy,
Total cooking time: 1 hour 25 minutes,
- Prep time: 45 minutes,
- Cooking time: 40 minutes,
Equipment used: 1 large casserole dish with lid, 1 colander, 1 large pie dish,
Original recipe: Jamie Oliver’s turkey and sweet leek pie
One of many in Jamie Oliver’s Christmas Cookbook
Even before Christmas has truly started, we are inundated with recipe suggestions to use up leftovers (what an anti climax!) Despite the abundance, I usually pack up any remains to have for lunch at work over the next few days (dragging out that festive feeling a little longer) or simply pick at the titbits alongside big quantities of cheese and chutney.
Even if this is a little uninspiring, after the mammoth event that is Christmas dinner, I’d be loathe to do any real cooking for at least a week… that is, until I watched an episode (or 10) of Jamie’s Christmas through which I sat, licking my lips, whilst he served up this beautiful meaty concoction with lashings of gravy. I was sold. (If in any doubt, you can watch some bearded bloke make this here – get ready to salivate)
Now we don’t typically have a lot of leftover meat in our household (we should, but everyone manages to squeeze a little bit more than they should onto their plate), but I do tend to have a lot of leftover (cooked and uncooked) – Jamie describes this recipe as “versatile” and he is not wrong – I throw all of the leftovers in, cooked and raw carrots and sprouts (add the raw veg at the start and cooked in with the cooked meat)) plus bacon bits, pigs in blanket and even leftover spuds or stuffing.
In the spirit of throwing things in, I don’t really tend to measure any quantities, but have included the originals here if you’re feeling a bit more methodological.
The Jamie Oliver’s Christmas Cookbook which houses this recipe is actually one of my favourites and not just for Christmas. A lovely Xmas pressie actually for the foodie in your life.
(Original recipe in bold font)
- Wash, trim and chop 2kg of leeks (make sure to finely slice the green end)
- Thinly dice any other raw veg you want to add
- Roughly chop 2 rashers of bacon
Preheat your oven to 190°C/375°F/gas 5.
For the filling:
Put 2 rashers of roughly chopped bacon into a large pan on a medium heat and add half a bunch of fresh thyme leaves. Add a lug of olive oil and let it all fry off a few minutes. Add 2kg of your chopped leeks and fry them off for about 3 minutes. If you have other raw veg, dice and add in now.
Add a pinch of salt and pepper then pop the lid on top, turn the heat down to medium and let them cook away gently for 30 minutes, stirring every 5 to 10 minutes to make sure they don’t catch.
When your leeks are ready, add 800g turkey meat to them and stir. If you’ve got a bit of stuffing mixed in there you can put that in too. Add 2 heaped teaspoons of flour, mix it in well then pour in 2 pints of chicken or vegetable stock and stir again.
Add 2 tablespoons of crème fraîche then turn the heat up and bring everything back up to the boil. Have a taste and add a bit more salt and pepper if it needs it then turn the heat off. Pour the mixture through a sieve over another large empty pan and let the wonderful gravy from the mixture drip into the pan while you roll out your pastry.
For the pastry:
Get a deep baking dish roughly 22 x 30cm. Dust a clean surface and a rolling pin with a bit of flour and roll your pastry out so it’s about double the size of your dish. Crumble the chestnuts over one half of the pastry then tear a few of the sage leaves over the chestnuts. Fold the other half of pastry on top then roll it out carefully and evenly so you have a rectangle big enough to cover your baking tray. Don’t worry if a few bits stick out here and there.
Now the puff pastry I bought was pre-rolled, rather than a solid block and I was loathe to roll it out again. Wanting to use up the leftover chestnuts, I instead bashed them with the rolling pin and pushed these into the pastry. Bish bash bosh.
Spoon the thick leek mixture from your sieve into the pie dish and spread it out evenly. Lay your pastry on top, tuck the ends under then gently score the pastry diagonally with your knife. Add a pinch of salt to your beaten egg then paint this egg wash over the top of your pastry.
Use any leftover pastry to create decorative leaves, patterns or to write “Alex pie” !
Pop your pie in the oven for about 35 to 40 minutes or until the pastry is puffed up and golden brown. When the pie is ready, re-heat the lovely gravy and serve with your pie, along with some peas tossed in butter, lemon, salt and pepper and everyone’s happy!
- Anything from your leftover roast dinner!
- 2 rashers higher-welfare smoked streaky bacon , roughly chopped
- ½ bunch fresh thyme , leaves picked
- olive oil
- 2 kg leeks , washed, trimmed; white end chopped into chunks, green end finely sliced
- sea salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- 800 g cooked white turkey meat , torn into big chunks
- 2 heaped tablespoons plain flour , plus extra for dusting
- 2 pints organic turkey, chicken or vegetable stock
- 2 tablespoons crème fraîche
- 500 g puff pastry
- 12 jarred or vac-packed chesntnuts , roasted and peeled
- 2 sprigs of fresh sage , leaves picked
- 1 free-range egg , beaten